Robert Pattinson is amazing in The Rover. The bleak, dystopian Western is out now, and his performance is sure to convince even the biggest RPattz critics to do a spit take of their haterade. Sure, I’m basically the captain of the Rob Pattinson Fan Train, but it’s not just me he’s blown away. Critics left Cannes raving about his performance, and the accolades are ongoing. But in case you need convincing, I’m here to help.
1. Yes, critics love him.
Pattinson got decent reviews for his work in David Cronenberg’s Cosmopolis, and, well, you know what most people think about Twilight. But the reviews he’s garnering for The Rover are overwhelmingly positive.
- “Both Mr. Pearce and Mr. Pattinson are superb in their roles.” – The Wall Street Journal
- “Pattinson, free of the Twilight trap, shows real acting chops, especially in a moving final scene.” – Rolling Stone
- “…a career-redefining performance by Robert Pattinson that reveals untold depths of sensitivity and feeling in the erstwhile Twilight star.” – Variety
- “Convincingly played by Pattinson” – LA Times
2. Rey is unlike any other character he’s ever played.
There is no brooding here, no scowling or sparkling or angst. Rey is vulnerable and open, a small spark of hope in an otherwise depressing and desolate world. Even when he exhibits strength and power he’s still naive, and that is what makes this character so heartbreaking. Pattinson has often gravitated toward high status characters, or as he told me in our interview (watch below), “rich loners.” In The Rover he goes for the opposite, and it works.
3. He has the one comedic scene of the movie [SPOILER-ISH ALERT].
In the middle of the film is a scene where Pattinson quietly sings Keri Hilson’s “Pretty Girl Rock” while basked in the light of a pick-up truck. It’s such a weird, unexpected moment that it’s mentioned in just about every interview and review of the film and with good reason: it’s simply great.
4. He holds his own against Guy Pearce.
Veteran actor Guy Pearce is incredible as Rey’s stoic, ruthless road trip partner Eric. Pattinson’s Rey is the perfect antidote to the Eric’s embittered intensity.
5. There’s no romance in The Rover.
Pattinson’s been a love interest in almost all of his recent films (Twilight, Remember Me, Bel Ami, Water for Elephants). While we wouldn’t call Cosmopolis romantic, the film did involve some serious limo-humping. The Rover establishes a world in which it’s almost impossible for love to exist, as those left are just struggling to survive. With sex and love out of the film’s equation, we get to see Pattinson do something completely new for the first time.